Top 20 moments of 2014, #13: Formula E gets a flying start

Looking back over the top moments of 2014, we couldn't miss the big start to the quiet series in Beijing.

Top 20 moments of 2014, #13: Formula E gets a flying start
Nick Heidfeld, Venturi
Nick Heidfeld, Venturi
Stéphane Sarrazin and Nick Heidfeld sign with Venturi
Nicolas Prost, e.dams-Renault
Nicolas Prost, e.dams-Renault

...And not in the preferred way. The FIA Formula E championship is here, and here to stay. There were many doubters when the series first appeared and many still remain, but three rounds in, many of those who criticized it have been turned. Even if the lack of thundering race cars, growling even at an idle turns you off, the action-packed races are hard to ignore.

What was the best way for their first event to end? Well, in controversy of course. Rebellion LMP1 co-drivers were turned into rivals in the closing laps of the Beijing ePrix. Nick Heidfeld harassed a fellow Nick ... Nico Prost to be exact. With time running out, he was desperate to find a way past and earn the glory of being Formula E's first victor.

Heidfeld got his chance as the two raced towards the final corner, on the final lap. Heidfeld launched down to the inside and Prost attempted to react, but it was much too late. What happened next instantly took F1 fans of the 80's back and images of two Marlboro-sponsored McLarens crept up into their mind, tangled together in Suzuka, Japan.

Prost turned right into the side of Heidfeld, but the two did not hook together. Heidfeld went spinning and hit one of those notorious sausage kerbs, lifting the car up into the air. With so much momentum left to dissipate, the car tumbled to the shock of the crowd and landing upside down. The garages erupted with concerned and horrifying looks. Heidfeld quickly emerged from the wreckage with a fire in his eyes and bolted after a just-as-stunned Prost. The two had a heated discussion and failed to agree, later reconciling in time for their next WEC race together.

 

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